If I could control the weather….

Roger and Miller with their coats on.

This time of year the weather can be incredibly frustrating. I seem to wake up every morning saying “If I could control the weather it will be above freezing with no wind chill so I can train outside today!” Unfortunately, I can’t control the weather.

Follow Me Dog Training LLC’s official weather policy states that if the temperatures with wind chill stay below 35 degrees, all lessons and classes that need to be held outside will be canceled. It is just too cold to learn, both for you the humans and for your dogs. If schools have been canceled because of snow or ice, lessons and classes will be canceled. If the school buses can’t get to the schools and neighborhoods, I am not trying either. Not to mention the terrain may make it difficult to train your dog outside.

I know some of you will say “My dog loves being outside when it is cold!” Some dogs do enjoy it a bit more, but remember when we are engaged in a lesson, they aren’t playing or constantly moving and they need to learn. Don’t forget that you as a human training partner will need to be in that same cold learning as well. A couple years ago I wrote a blog post about when it is Too Cold To Learn. Please go back and read that (click on the link and it will take you right too it).

Frostbite and Hypothermia are the two big things to watch out for, with your dog, when it is cold out. Keep your trips outside to 10 minutes or less. Put a coat on your dog if they have short fur. Don’t mistake panting in the cold for being over heated…that is your dogs way of regulating temperatures! If it is too cold for you to go out without many layers, it is too cold for the dog to be out for a period of time either!

Joe, enjoying a 10 minute lesson and playtime in the first snow he has ever seen

Richmond VA, may or may not see much snow…we never know do we. There are a bunch of other precautions to take when snow is on the ground. Wiping salt off your dog’s paws, not letting them ruin their housebreaking from eating snow, wet and cold health issues, taking care of your older dog on the slick surfaces. Be smart about your dog in the snow!

So if you are a current client, or a client waiting to start with me, and you receive the dreaded email that says it is too cold out for a lesson, just know, I wish I could control the weather, because I would rather be outside training your dogs and you then inside doing my taxes and computer work 🙂 I am looking out for you and your dog’s best interest by canceling.

Even Frappy wears a coat when the weather drops into the 30’s and below.

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